Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Understanding Exposure, fourth edition by Bryan Peterson Book Review

This newly revised edition of Bryan Peterson’s most popular book demystifies the complex concepts of exposure in photography, allowing readers to capture the images they want.

Understanding Exposure has taught generations of photographers how to shoot the images they want by demystifying the complex concepts of exposure in photography. In this newly updated edition, veteran photographer Bryan Peterson explains the fundamentals of light, aperture, and shutter speed and how they interact with and influence one another. With an emphasis on finding the right exposure even in tricky situations, Understanding Exposure shows you how to get (or lose) sharpness and contrast in images, freeze action, and take the best meter readings, while also exploring filters, flash, and light. With all new images, as well as an expanded section on flash, tips for using colored gels, and advice on shooting star trails, this revised edition will clarify exposure for photographers of all levels.


BRYAN PETERSON is a professional photographer, an internationally known instructor, and the best-selling author of Understanding Exposure, Understanding Shutter Speed, Learning to See Creatively, Understanding Digital Photography, and Beyond Portraiture. In addition, he is the founder of the online photography school The Perfect Picture School of Photography. He lives in Chicago.

My Thoughts:

Less than two years ago I bought my first DSLR camera a Nikon D5100 and I since have purchased several lenses. Wow, what a learning curb. Sure I can put it on auto and snap much better pictures than my old camera. I have ventured out some and started playing around with the other settings on my camera. 

I wanted more I wanted to know why when I have perfect conditions why the pictures aren’t coming out the way I expect them to. When Understanding Exposure came available for a review I was pretty excited to read it.

Not only is the book packed with information in this 168 page book. The photographs are absolutely stunning. Do I understand everything I have been reading! Haaa Haaa I am still trying to process everything. The good news is that I am learning some new things to be a better photographer. It makes me feel like a novice whom I am and I’m having a lot of fun one step at a time.

Bryan Peterson challenges you to stop using the auto mode and put it in manual and so I have been putting my camera in manual. As far as the results well they have been good and bad but, I am learning by doing it not just reading about it. I like that he gives you some challenges to do and then he tells you what to watch for while doing the shots. Very helpful with it adding some hands on points.

ISO have been a bit confusing to me but Bryan Peterson explains it like this, “Think of ISO as a worker bee. If my camera is set for ISO 100, I have in effect 100 worker bees, and if I have my camera set for ISO 200, you have 200 worker bees. The job of these worker bees is to gather the light that comes through the lenses and make an image.” Then he goes on to explain that it takes your 200 worker bees only half as much time as my 100 worker bees to make the image”. I get ISO now it took the beekeeper in me to make it stick in my head and not to confuse other terms.


Defining Exposure


Shutter Speed


Special Techniques

Electronic Flash 

Is this book for a person who just went out and bought their first DSLR, it depends on how much you know already. I would familiarize yourself with your camera. I found out that I actually don’t know my camera as well as I should or thought I did.

This is a great book with lots of information and for me being at the beginning of my photographic journey I suspect I will be referring to it a lot. This is not a step by step book so don’t expect it to hold your hand to take stunning photos.

Overall, I find this a wonderful resource that has challenged me to spend more time learning about this hobby that I enjoy. I have a son who loves taking pictures and I would love to teach him more about photography and to learn how to work our camera better.

I received a free copy of this product from Blogging for Books- Waterbrook in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this information accordance with the FTC Regulations.

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